Sylvan Lake’s Walker Stevenson scored the golden goal for the Junior Calgary Roughnecks’ midget squad at the Junior NLL Championship.
The 16-year-old scored the game-winner in a 7-5 win over the reigning champion Toronto Rock at the tournament in Oakville, Ont. in late August.
“It was an incredible feeling,” said Stevenson. “I don’t think I ever really had that sort of excitement because we just entered the tournament and we took down the champions.”
With the score tied at five and about three minutes left, Stevenson saw the ball get knocked loose. Despite playing defence, he made a split-second decision to activate offensively.
“I ran to the ball, grabbed it, sprinted as hard as I could to the net, did a little fake on the goalie and put it five-hole,” said Stevenson.
After his goal, there were some nerves about whether they could keep Toronto from tying things up, he said.
“We knew we had to earn this win and we knew it wasn’t just going to come to us. We just kept the pressure on them and stopped them from scoring.”
The H. J. Cody School student has only played lacrosse for three years, he said. He can’t take all the credit for his success so far in his young career.
“I’ve got a lot of help from my coaches over the years. They’ve really been a big part of my success by teaching me every little thing I didn’t know about the game and have helped me a lot,” he said.
After joining the Junior Roughnecks about a month ago, the team has practiced a couple times a week. Being able to raise the championship trophy with his teammates, who he has spent so much time with, was a “big moment,” he said.
“We all got to know each other over those practices. We all became close and to win it all was special,” he said.
This was the first time the Junior Roughnecks participated in the Junior NLL Championship.